The Kiev Metro system is the city’s main mode of public transport. Three lines meet in the centre and connect over 40 stations.
Click here for an interactive map of the Kiev Metro.
The Metro is reliable and extremely cheap. A ride between any two stations costs a measly 2 UAH, including any transfers between lines. Compare this with say the London Underground (the Tube) where a single journey from Zone 1 to 6 currently costs £5.30, approximately 70 UAH.
Tickets, actually small plastic tokens, can be purchased from the ticket offices found in station lobbies. Look for the window with a sign saying Каси (kasy – ticket office). They’ll usually be a grumpy old lady sat behind it. She won’t speak any English so just hand her some cash and indicate with your fingers how many tokens you want.
If the queue at the ticket office is too big you can purchase tokens from the orange machines, also located in station lobbies. These accept 2 UAH and 10 UAH notes and dish out tokens in return.
Visitors staying in Kiev for extended periods can buy a monthly, unlimited-use Metro pass. They cost 95 UAH and can be purchased from the 22nd of the previous month. Passes purchased after the 15th (expiring at the end of the month) cost 48 UAH.
Combination passes for allowing unlimited use of other modes of public transport (trolleybuses, trams, and buses) are also available.
In practice you’d have to be a pretty heavy user of public transport for a pass to make economic sense.
Stations open around 5.45 am (some a few minutes earlier, some later) and close at midnight or just after. Trains are fairly frequent. They usually come every 2 minutes during rush hour, at 10 minute intervals late at night, and around every 5 minutes at other times.
Finding the Metro station is your first task. We strongly advise downloading the Easyway transport planner for your smartphone. It will help plan your route and guide you to the appropriate station.
Entrances are marked with a green ‘М’ (for метро). The entrance could be in a building (the case for most of the large city centre stations such as Universytet, Teatralna, Khreschatyk, Arsenalna etc.) or an underground walkway.
To reach station lobby you’ll need to pass through some glass doors. Be sure you pick the right one. The entrance is marked ВХІД. HЕМАЄ ВХОДУ means ‘No entrance’ and indicates the exit doors. We emphasise this because these swinging doors are extremely heavy and getting smashed in the face with one is an unpleasant experience.
In the station lobby you’ll see the ticket office (Каси), ticket machines, and turnstiles leading to the platforms. On the wall there will also be a map of the Metro system.
To reach the platforms just put your token in the slot in the turnstile, wait for the light to turn green, and then push the barrier.
You’ll have to take an escalator (unless it’s a ground level station) down to the platforms. The escalator ride can be a journey in itself (nearly 5 minutes at Arsenlna). Stand on the right hand side of the escalator and hold the rail (the left hand side is for passengers in a hurry that want to walk or run).
The escalator will bring you down to the platforms. There will be one to your right and one on your left. Pay careful attention to the signs above as you reach the end of the escalator. They indicate the stations that can be reached by taking the left or right platform.
Take the appropriate turn and wait on the platform for the next train. There are electronic clocks at the end of each platform. These show the time that has elapsed since the last train departed.
Once on the train keep an eye on the electronic monitors attached to the carriage ceiling. They show the name of the next station (plus annoying advertisements). Until recently the information was only in Ukrainian but now, thanks to Euro 2012, station names are also displayed in English.
On reaching your destination, just follow the crowds to the exit. If nobody is about look for the sign that says ВИХІД У МІСТО (exit to the city). Take the escalator and you’ll find yourself in the station lobby.
The three lines are connected by underground walkways in three places, allowing passengers to change lines without exiting the Metro system and paying again.
To reach the connecting station, look for the sign that says ‘ПЕРЕХІД НА СТАНЦІЮ’ (switch to station).
|Red - Green||Teatralna – Zoloti Vorota|
|Red – Blue||Khreshchatyk – Maidan Nezalezhnosti|
|Blue – Green||Ploshcha Lva Tolstoho – Palats Sportu|